#13 The Things I Love About Glue – The Experiment!

There couldn’t be anything more beautiful than a hand-made card or gift any time of the year let alone on an occasion as special as Christmas. I was pretty excited about the prospect of making my own cards this year with all the lovely little scraps and ribbons I’d accumulated over the year. However when it came to it, I found myself in a bit of a predicament; all these wonderful ingredients to make a beautiful card but I would need something with which to stick them together as beautifully!
After desperately ‘Googling’ and ‘You-tubing’ all the card-making videos tutoring the technique of ‘sticking’ I was left a little disappointed. They just weren’t clear – perhaps ‘specific’ is the word I’m after – enough for what I wanted to.

IMG-20131204-WA0002 20131130_213325_LLS (1)

What did I want to do??

Stick Paper on to Card, without WRINKLING or BUBBLING!

You’d think this was an obviously simple enough task, but its not necessarily so especially if you don’t have any experience of card-making to have learned from.

My first attempt of sticking paper to card was raw and purely non-systematic. I used a cheap multipack glue stick I’d purchased on a crafty splurge recently thinking innocently that I was doing myself a favour buying in bulk. I rubbed it on to the paper and stuck it to the card (precisely as described). To my horror what next followed was a series of wrinkling and bubbling up that reminded me of the times my dad would try to wallpaper the living room and seeing my mother’s distress at the giganto bubbles that were surfacing everywhere!


That gave me a wake-up call! Time for a technique, a simple one, but a fool-proof one nontheless.

So I have two glues to test out and the technique with which to use them is respectively unique.

Task at hand

Sticking Paper (decorative or otherwise) to card. Both materials having your average weighting, nothing out of the ordinary.


To ensure a flat and smooth attachment, without the wrinking or bubbling effect.


1. PVA Glue


(Image: PVA Glue from Amazon, http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mini-Washable-Glue-Bottles-Pack/dp/B0071XUJ50/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1386198603&sr=8-4&keywords=pva+glue)

PVA glue is perhaps the most commonly used ‘craft’ glue about town. It has been used to stick a variety of materials together:

  • As an emulsion in water, PVA emulsions are used as adhesives for porous materials, particularly for wood, paper, and cloth.

(Thank you Wikipedia)

I have seen this used as the main glue in all craft TV shows and therefore considered this to be a good option for my project.

The PVA Technique

The PVA glue I was using was in a squeezy-bottle. Squirting some PVA glue on to a non-stick plastic saucer, an applicator brush was used to apply the glue on to the paper to be stuck down on to the card. Be sure not to apply too much; it should be a very thin layer of glue.

Results – The application was easy enough, the paper had to be patted down with finger-tips at the edges to ensure there were no raised edges. Due to the ‘wetness’ of the glue i.e. the water/liquid content it was not surprising to find that the paper had laid down with a number of wrinkles. It wasn’t easy to force these out either because the paper was now wet and liable to tear.

Conclusion – Failure to meet objective on this occasion

2. Pritt Stick Glue Stick (or any other good-quality glue stick)


(Image: The Telegraph, online newspaper article, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/5874094/Pritt-Stick-celebrates-its-40th-birthday.html)

Pritt is a brand of adhesives, tapes, KidsArt, correction, and fixing products designed and marketed by Henkel, an international company with its headquarters in Düsseldorf, Germany. Pritt invented the world’s first glue stick, also known as the Pritt Stick, which is a solid adhesive in a twistable casing used in home, school and office environments.

(Thanks again, Wikipedia)

A glue stick that has been around since about 1969, I was wondering why I even bothered throwing money at the multi-pack cheaper brand in the first place?! There is no cutting corners here, Pritt Stick is the only glue stick to use. Full stop.

So here’s how it went with the paper-card experiment.

The Pritt-Stick Technique

Remove the lid, ensure the glue is not dry on the end otherwise this won’t work. Apply the glue all around the edges of the paper (works fine if the paper has a patterned edge too which is a bonus) and form a cross like shape in the centre of the paper to get the glue in the main body. Then holding it edge-first on to the card, where you’d like it to begin, LAY it down going left to right being sure to remove any wrinkling/bubbling as you go. Then when it has been laid down completely, you need to pat down the edges in a in-to-outward movement. This isn’t much work evidently.

Results – The paper was laid down well, it held its structure well (i.e. no sogginess). There weren’t many wrinkles/bubbles to speak of and any that were seen were easily pushed outwards without the risk of tearing the paper.

Conclusion – This is the way to go. Objective achieved yay!

20131204_2023302013-12-04 20.55.35 - Copy


When you have completed sticking all your bits and bobs to your card another vital step is the ‘clamping’ of the card under a heavy book or weight (ensuring the card won’t stick the heavy weight of course with a plastic sheet perhaps). Leave the card there until the glue has completely dried. What you will have is a fully stuck together finished article to be proud of. This step just reinforces all the attachments you have just made between the various pieces you might be using.


To give a 3D ‘lift’ to any smaller components of the card a nice effect can be achieved using adhesive foam pads. Don’t even think about using these to attach the paper to the card (they are not exactly like double-sided tape, just a relation). But certainly use them to raise the smaller decorative pieces you might be adding to your cards (excluding ribbons).


Any will do the trick, here I some I came across on Amazon, UK.

(Image and product: Amazon, http://www.amazon.co.uk/Double-Sticky-Adhesive-Squares-Decoupage/dp/B00EKJ8X06/ref=sr_1_16?ie=UTF8&qid=1386198906&sr=8-16&keywords=card+making+glue)

And Finally…..

A glue I’ve heard much about but never personally tried is Mod Podge(R)! Here’s a little paragraph I found about it:

Since 1967, crafters have entrusted their most treasured decoupage creations to Mod Podge®, the number one, all-in-one glue, sealer and finish! The ultimate in convenience, Mod Podge is loved by crafters young and old for its flexibility, versatility and supreme ease of use. Best of all, it’s waterbase for easy clean-up, and non-toxic, too–perfect for young crafters.

(Source: http://www.plaidonline.com/mod-podge/brand/home.htm)

A lady called Kristi Linauer of the Addicted 2 decorating blog made this nice little tutorial video about using Mod Podge(R) in decoupaging! Since this is another versatile craft I’m likely to try my hand in at some point, I may have to invest in this phenomenon called Mod Podge(R) soon.


You can buy Mod Podge(R) on Amazon UK by following this link:


Thanks for reading about my glue experiences, I sincerely hope this will help someone out there!

Happy Crafting!



2 thoughts on “#13 The Things I Love About Glue – The Experiment!

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